He grabbed her. They were at the Mcdonald’s playground, she came up to the table,“I have something important to tell you.”
“Wait a second until we are done talking.” Miranda continued her animated story. Nearly three minutes later, “Okay what is it?”
“A boy grabbed me on the slide (she pointed at her tiny breast) and ran away!”
“Where is he?” I demanded. She looked around. She pointed to an empty table. “He’s gone.”
“Why didn’t you say something sooner?” I asked
“You told me to wait.”
She was right. “Interrupt next time, please interrupt. This was important. Normally, your important is like your sister did or did not do something.”
“There they are!” She exclaimed.
They were walking outside,
I bolted for the door.
“Excuse me sir, one of your sons grabbed my niece’s boob.”
He looked at his sons. “Which one of you did it?”
None of them confessed. Two of them looked too small. “I have an idea that it might be him (I pointed at the oldest boy) but let me go grab my niece so she can point him out.”
He waited. He was still. A slender black man with lovely dreads.
Miranda shook his hand and introduced herself. The great tension releaser.
I walked back inside to grab my niece,“Which one was it?”
“Him!” She pointed her hand at the older boy the way kids point at people in movies. A straight arm with a matter of factness.
“Apologize now!” The dad said.
“Sorry!” He mumbled.
I pushed my niece closer to him.
“Louder so she can hear.” The father whispered.
I moved my niece out of the way.
I got close to the boy. He was probably nine or ten. His eyes said he was full grown. There was no air of remorse or fear. I wondered about him. What had he seen? How was his mind being formed?”
I bent down to get closer to him. My heart was so concerned. “Look I don’t want anything bad to happen to you when you get older. You look like you are going to be a good-looking man. I don’t want anything bad to happen to you.”
My adrenaline was pumping. My mind couldn’t think straight. I didn’t say all the things I wish I had said like, “Your job is to protect women.” A part of me wanted to hug him.
I looked at the father, “Please don’t punish him too badly.”
I’m not sure if I heard him correctly, what I thought I heard as he walked away was, “Oh I will.”
On the ride home my niece said, “Okay where were we?”
I laughed,“What do you mean?”
“Okay, do you want to talk first or me?”
“No you!” I said.
“Well first of all, he probably doesn’t get enough attention at home. And two he probably sees things on TV.”
“Yes but how does your body feel?”
“It feels angry.”
“And it should, It absolutely should. I have my own stories, I have had things happen, I am so glad you told me.”
We high-fived each other.
It was silent for a moment.
“Did you tell?” Her sweet voice filled my ears.
My eyes immediately filled up with tears.
“Grace, Grace, Grace?” Her voice was so sweet. It was innocent, It was the Grace voice she likes to use when she sees my eyes water.
I caught my breath.
“There was no one to tell.”
I smiled, “But you will never have to go through that, you will always have someone to tell.”
She pressed further. “No aunt, no mother, a grandma?”